Friendly rivalry Renewed at Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon

June 14, 2013


by Paul Gains

As far as rivalries go Canada’s leading female marathoners Krista Duchene and Lanni Marchant are on extremely good terms. No trash talking, no mud slinging. Cooperation up to a point.

In the absence of dedicated pacemakers the pair helped each other to personal bests at the 2012 Rotterdam Marathon which qualified them to represent Canada at the 2013 IAAF World Championships in Moscow later in the summer. But a major test of their preparedness comes June 23rd at the Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon, a race that Duchene won a year ago in 1:14:03.

“When we ran in Rotterdam we had never even met until we got there,” Duchene reveals, “and we just clicked in that first race working together. Obviously, in the end, it’s any person’s race. But, as the distance gets longer your competition also becomes your ally.”

Duchene began her 2013 Canadian season with a hard fought and very surprising victory at the Harry’s Spring Run Off 8km while Marchant won the Toronto Yonge Street 10k. Those events, as well as the SVHM,  are part of the Canada Running Series.

They met again at the Ottawa 10k where Marchant placed 6th in 32:46 with Duchene 7th in 32:52.

Read the full article,


Large elite field to vie for Whistler Half titles

May 29, 2013

By Eric MacKenzie, Whistler Question

With a former champion returning and more elite runners filling out the field than ever before, the third edition of The North Face Whistler Half Marathon is already shaping up to be a competitive race.

Race organizers learned Monday (May 20) that Vancouver’s David Palermo would not be back to defend his title from 2012 as expected, but the event is still drawing a talented group of B.C. runners that includes last year’s other podium finishers — Jason Loutitt of Squamish and Edward McCarthy from Vancouver.

Former Whistler resident Care Nelson, the 2011 women’s winner of the Whistler Half Marathon, is also back for the June 1 race after placing second last year.

“I love Whistler and take any excuse I can get to come visit. I keep coming back for The North Face Whistler Half Marathon because it’s an all-around incredible event,” Nelson said in a press release. “It’s so well organized and spectator-friendly, and includes great guest speakers, an awards ceremony and entertainment for all ages.”

To qualify for elite runner status, male entrants must have completed a previous half marathon in less than one hour, 15 minutes. The benchmark for women is 1:25.

Also part of the men’s elite field will be David Jackson of Abbotsford, Nicholas Browne of Vancouver — the sixth-place full-distance finisher in this year’s BMO Vancouver Marathon — and fellow B.C. runners Colin Wallace, Mike Chandler and Geoff Reid.

Former Whistler resident Kristina Rody has been named to the elite women’s field alongside Nelson, Tina Connelly, Catrin Jones and Amy Schneeberg.

“Elite runners are always a spectator favourite,” said race director Dave Clark in the release. “This year’s men’s and ladies’ sides are well-stacked with runners and the race will be great from anywhere along the course.”

This year’s race will also award a prize purse of $1,600 to the top finishers. The sold-out event will include a 10-kilometre course for the first time, with runners leaving the Whistler Olympic Plaza start line between 7 and 8 a.m. next Saturday (June 1).

Meanwhile, there’s a way for spectators to come away with prizes this year with the announcement of the race’s Cheer For Gear contest. Spectators are encouraged to think of a creative way to cheer on the runners on race day, then register that cheer on the event website. The competitors themselves will then vote on their favourite cheer, with the winning entrant receiving a camping equipment package worth more than $900 from The North Face.

Visit to register your cheer and find full event details.

UBC’s NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships Previews

May 22, 2013

BY: Devin Rajala ( 

VANCOUVER – A group of nine UBC Thunderbirds men and 17 women are in Marion, Indiana for the  NAIA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The meet runs May 23-25 on the on the campus of Indiana Wesleyan University.
UBC Men’s Preview –
UBC Women’s Preview –
Live Streaming –

Four BC Race Walkers named as Athletics Canada’s Panamerican Race Walking Cup Team

May 9, 2013

OTTAWA – Athletics Canada announced four athletes that will travel to Guatemala City, Guatemala to compete at the Panamerican Race Walking Cup on May 25 and 26. Connolly, Dunfee, Gomez and Thorne will all head south to compete in the 20km race walk which takes place at 4:00pm local time (6:00pm eastern time) on Saturday May 25.

“Canada’s Senior Men Race Walkers are ready to show the rest of the western hemisphere that we are once again contenders for the top spots”, comments Gerry Dragomir, Head coach of the contingent heading to Guatemala City. “This team representing Canada is the strongest senior men’s 20km race walk team that has ever been sent into competition. These young men have trained together since they were juniors and know the event, as well as their competitors, better than most. Up to now we have only been shown a few promising glimpses of what these athletes are capable of. This is a challenging event for us with the altitude, heat and long travel; a set of good finishes here will create a lot of excitement for the bigger events to come.”

The team will be led by Vancouver, B.C.’s Inaki Gomez whose international experience is highlighted by his 2012 Olympic debut last summer in London, England. Gomez set a new Canadian record at the Games with a time of 1:20:58 over 20km and this time also registered him a standard towards making the 2013 International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) World Championships team.

Also heading to Guatemala is Creighton Connolly of Vancouver, B.C., who represented Canada last year at the IAAF World Race Walk Cup in Saransk, Russia registering personal best performances in both the 10km and 20km race walks.

Richmond, B.C.’s Evan Dunfee won gold at the NACAC U-23 championships last season over 20000m (on track) race walk. He also clenched the 2012 National title in the senior 10km race walk.

Benjamin Thorne of Kitimat, B.C., is competing in his first senior year. As a junior last season Benjamin won both the Canadian 10km and 20km race walk Championships while setting new Canadian Junior Records of 40:26 and 1:21:55 in the two events respectively.

The Panamerican Race Walking Cup course is located in the Simeon Canas Avenue which has a one-kilometre closed loop. 45 countries are expected to compete.

For more information visit:

Weekend Roundup

April 11, 2013

Looking back to last weekend (click on the links for full stories):

Browne coasts to victory, Brooking defends title at 36th Fool’s Run

Merritt’s Aabye wins 2nd OC Half Marathon

Runners tear it up in Merville 15K

UBC captures the 2013 Achilles Cup over SFU

Croft leads Clan at Achilles Cup

Nuttall breaks High Jump record at Achilles Cup

Records fall at the Province Gran Forsa V presented by Telus

And looking ahead to this weekend:

Saturday sees the inaugural Harriers Bob Reid Magical Mile in Victoria

And on Burnaby Mountain, the Emilie Mondor Spring Open

On Sunday, the Interior Road Race Series action continues with the Oliver “Wine Capital of Canada” 10K

The MEC Road Race Series gets underway in Victoria

The racing season kicks off in Prince Rupert with the Half Marathon and 8K

And Up The Creek offers 10K, 5K and a Kids 1K options in Port Coquitlam

Finally, Monday is the Boston Marathon.

Weekend action to look forward to

April 5, 2013

After the lull for Easter, lots of action to look forward to this weekend.

On Saturday…

Indoor track at the Richmond Oval features high school teams from across the province competing in the Gran Forza V, a five person pentathlon.

The sold out Diez Vista 50K takes ultra runners on a tour around Sasamat and Buntzen Lakes and surrounding areas near Port Moody.

And MEC Vancouver hosts the second race of their series, with 5K and 10K options at Burnaby Lake.

On Sunday…

Competition resumes in each of the regional road race series.

The penultimate race in the Frontrunners Island Race Series heads up Island to Campbell River for the Merville 15K.–sunday-april-7

The Lower Mainland Road Race Series takes the ferry to Gibsons for the BMO Sunshine Coast April Fool’s Half Marathon, the fourth race in the series. Palermo and Brooking returning to defend titles.

And the fourth race in the Canadian Tire Interior Road Race Series is also a half marathon, the Okanagan College Half in Kelowna.

In the Fraser Valley, Heritage to Hatzic offers 5K and 10K events in Mission.

And finally, on the track on Burnaby Mountain, SFU host the annual Achilles Cup dual meet against cross town rivals UBC.


Weekend Race Previews

March 22, 2013

Another busy weekend of road racing around BC.

Kip Kangogo, Lisa Harvey confirmed to defend titles as CRS 2013 begins at Vancouver Spring Run Off 8K

Jim Finlayson chasing Canadian Masters Record at Comox Valley RV Half Marathon

And racing gets underway in the North, with the Heights Fiver (5K and 8K) in Prince George.


“First Half” Half Marathon, Race Preview

February 5, 2013

The 24th “First Half” Half Marathon in Vancouver on February 10th, which additionally hosts the 2013 BC Half Marathon Championship and is the third race in the 2013 Timex BC Road Race Series, has attracted another very competitive field, featuring manyof the top runners from the Pacific Northwest. Starting and finishing at the Roundhouse  Community Centre, the route includes a circuit of the Stanley Park seawall.

Olympian and event record holder (1:04:22) Dylan Wykes will not be returning to defend his title. Nevertheless, the competition will be intense, with no clear favourite for the men’s race.

Rob Watson ran 1:03:29 in New York last March, before relocating to Vancouver from Ontario. He has qualified to represent Canada in the marathon at the World Championships in Moscow later this year, and will also be racing the Boston Marathon as part of his preparation, looking to improve his 2:13:37. Joseph Gray from Renton, WA is more at home on the trails, where he has represented the US on multiple occasions, but also has a half marathon best of 1:03:41.

David Jackson of Abbotsford was BC’s quickest 10Ker last year (30:34), was 2nd at the “First Half” in 2011, and won last week’s Icebreaker 8K. 2009 champion Richard Mosley of Vancouver returns after some time away with injury. From the Island, Matt Clout placed 5th at last year’s Canadian Half Marathon Championships. Representing Calgary, Jeremy Deere returns for teh first time since winning in 2005. Also in the mix will be Victoria’s Jim Finlayson, who turned 40 last fall, and will likely threaten the M4044 age group record of 1:08:47 set last year. All have recent performances suggesting times around 1:07.

Others expected to contest the minor placings include Victoria’s Kris Swanson, Vancouver’s Ryan Huff, Burnaby’s Dylan Gant and Oliver Utting, and the Yukon’s Shane Carlos; together with other top masters Graeme Wilson and Craig Odermatt, and former winners Bruce Deacon and Colin Dignum who could challenge the M4549 age group record of 1:11:53. Two more past champions entered are Norm Tinkham, and Neil Holm.

Last year’s women’s champion, Natasha Fraser from Port Moody, will be the clear favourite if she runs, and could put the event record of 1:12:47 in danger. Fraser won the 2012 Vancouver Sun Run, and the Goodlife Fitness Victoria Half Marathon, and most recently was crowned North American and Caribbean Cross Country Champion. However, she is preparing for the World Cross Country Championships in Poland in March, so may elect not to run. 

2011 champion Ellie Greenwood from North Vancouver will be back. Better known for her exploits at longer distances, including winning the 2012 BMO Vancouver Marathon and a former 100K World Champion, don’t count Greenwood out if she gets a scent of victory. Several other women with best times under 1:20 will also be in contention, including Vancouver’s Anne-Marie Madden, Calgary’s Pauline McLean, Quebec triathlete Magali Tisseyre, and representing Vancouver Island Catrin Jones, Erin Burrett, Melissa Ross and Care Nelson.

The top masters will also be right in the mix, led by three former “First Half” champions, including event record holder Tina Connelly from Port Coquitlam. Lisa Harvey, from Calgary, has a remarkable record at the “First Half”, having placed first or second in all but one of the last twelve editions, including four victories. While Lucy Smith, from Sidney, and Connelly both have two victories to their credit. Also, don’t rule out the 2012 Canadian Masters Cross Country Champion, Catherine Watkins.

In addition to the M4044 and M4549 records, several other age category records for the “First Half” may be under threat. Mark Bennett, who set the M5054 records of 1:13:47 last year, will return hoping for further improvement. Jim Swadling, who already owns the M6064 record, will have his eyes set on the M6569 record of 1:23:20. And Rod Waterlow and Roger Roufosse may push each other under Roger’s M7579 record of 1:48:53.

On the women’s side, Lucy Smith will have a shot at the F4549 record of 1:18:56. And the F5559 record of 1:36:59 is in serious jeopardy from Miriam Zderic of Bellingham, who ran 3:03:27 at the St Paul’s Marathon in 2011.

The oldest competitor will be 85 year old BJ McHugh, who has been running the “First Half” regularly since its’ inception, and is holder of all “First Half” age group records from F6064 and upwards. She only has to finish to establish an F8589 record, but BJ is also a multiple world record holder, and can set another world best performance at this year’s “First Half” by running quicker than 3:23:06. Her time last year, at age 84, was 2:27:02.

The race gets underway at 8:30am, with a loop around BC Place, before heading out to Stanley Park. The race sold out all 2,000 entries last November, and has attracted entrants from five Provinces and seven States.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Variety Telethon. Last year’s contribution brought total donations to Variety, the Children’s Charity to over $500,000 since 1995.

Additional information on the event website:

Cobble Hill 10K goes this Sunday

January 26, 2013

By Louise Hodgson-Jones

The second race in the Frontrunners Island Race Series – the Cobble Hill 10K – takes place on Sunday, January 27 at 11 am. The race starts and finishes at George Bonner Middle School, Cobble Hill Road. The 10K is hosted by the CEEVACS Road Runners.

Runners can register online until midnight, Wednesday January 23 at, or on race day. Race day fees are $35 and $30 for students.

“We are looking forward to another competitive field at the Cobble Hill 10K this weekend,” says Cathy Noel, President of the Vancouver Island Runners’ Association, the non-profit organization that coordinates the series. “We had an issue with snow and icy roads last year which caused us to re-schedule the race, but this year we are hoping for great racing weather. The course is a fast one!”

Read more:–sunday-january-27

Ice-Breaker Run returns to Steveston

January 26, 2013

By Christine Blanchette – Richmond Review

This Sunday morning at 8:30 a.m. there will be a buzz of runner activity in Steveston Village, as many will be lacing up to run the annual Kajaks Steveston Ice-Breaker 8km road race.

This event is organized by the Kajaks Track and Field Club and will be the first road race of the year – part of the Lower Mainland Road Race Series. The series provides all levels of runners a chance to compete in their age-group and there are 10 races from January to August. It is the second event of the Timex BC Road Running Series.

“The Ice Breaker has been a popular choice with many runners because it is certified, flat and an easy course” says, 72 year old Richmondite, JJ Schmidt, race director and established coach of the prestigious Kajaks Track and Field Club.

He adds, “There are fast times like 24:30 in this course and our run has been around for about eleven years now.” The course has always been popular with the elites and all levels of runners.

Read more:

Vancouver set for 2012 Canadian Cross Country Championships

November 22, 2012

The 2012 Canadian Cross Country Championships take place this Saturday November 24th in Jericho Park Vancouver, B.C., serving as the selection meet for both the 2013 NACAC (North America Central America and Caribbean) Cross Country Championships and IAAF World Cross Country Championships.

2012 Olympians taking their mark

Defending champion Cameron Levins of Black Creek, B.C., will face tough competition from fellow 2012 Olympic Games teammate Mohammed Ahmed of St. Catherines, Ont., in the senior men’s race. Both Levins and Ahmed finished in the top 20 in London in the men’s 10,000-metres. Kelly Wiebe of Swift Current, Sask., will also bring tight competition to the field as he recently was crowned the 2012 CIS (Canadian Interuniversity Sport) Cross Country Champion.

In the senior women’s race, hometown girls Natasha Fraser of Port Moody, B.C., and 2012 Olympian Jessica Smith of North Vancouver, B.C., will try to take home field advantage against Guelph, Ontario’s Megan Brown. Fraser will be looking to improve on her fifth place finish at the 2011 Canadian Cross Country Championships, while Brown captured the Canadian 10km road race title earlier this year. Strong competition will also come from Kate Harrison of Toronto, Ont., Genevieve Lalonde of Moncton, N.B and Kate Van Buskirk of Brampton, Ont.

Keep your eye out for these junior racers

Robert Denault of Aurora, Ont., is returning from a silver medal at the 2011 Canadian Junior Cross Country Championships and has his sights on gold for 2012. In the junior women’s race IAAF World Youth team member Jaime Phelan of Kitchener, Ontario will be a strong contender of those in the mix for the title.

Competition will officially be underway at 10:00am local time with Canadian titles on the line for masters, junior and senior categories.

Check out these interviews on as they preview the Championships:

Be sure to follow throughout the Championships for more.

For the latest news, schedule of events and results You can also follow all the action live on Facebook(CanadaTrackand Field) and on Twitter @athleticscanada. Use #cdnXCnationals2012.

National 10K Championship and Timex Series Finale this Saturday

September 19, 2012

Representing BC on Saturday at the Timex Series Finale in Toronto will be:

Samuel Pawluk (Point Grey TFC)
Jeremiah Ziak (Unattached)
David Jackson (Prairie Inn Harriers Racing Team)
Craig Odermatt (UVic Track Club)

Natasha Fraser (Prairie Inn Harriers Racing Team)
Sabrina Wilkie (Point Grey TFC)
Erin Burrett (Unattached)
Katherine Moore (Vancouver Falcons AC)

The Finale will be held in conjunction with the Canadian 10K Championship, at the Oasis ZooRun, part of the Canada Running Series.

For a complete race preview, read

Steve King honoured by race name

September 13, 2012

By Emanuel Sequeira – Penticton Western News

Steve King, known for announcing the Subaru Ironman Canada triathlons, as well as many BC road and trail races, is honoured to have a race in his name.

The Steve King Classic (100-kilometre) will take place Saturday beginning at 6 a.m. at Mile Zero in Princeton and finishes at 7 p.m. in Summerland’s Memorial Park.

“I’m honoured also because it’s for a very good cause, Feed the Valley,” said King. “It’s very pleasing for me. Far better now than a memorial as Steve (Brown) was saying.”

King said he knew that Brown, the race director, had been planning on hosting an event. He just had no idea it would take his name. Brown, owner of Peach City Runners and Adventure Sports, made the decision based on King’s years of dedication to ultra sports.

Athletes have the choice of doing the ultra event or the relay. To learn more about the course, check

Read more,

Coolsaet and Gillis make Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon their last stop before London Olympics

June 16, 2012

Two members of Canada’s 2012 Olympic marathon team  will line up at the Scotiabank Vancouver Half-Marathon in their final race before the London Olympics. On June 24, 2012 Olympic-bound athletes Eric Gillis and Reid Coolsaet will join an expected 7,000 runners and walkers in the Scotiabank Half-Marathon and 5K event. In addition to running for personal goals, many participants will be running to raise $650,000 in donations for 60 local charities through the Scotiabank Charity Challenge.

Elites to Watch For:

Eric Gillis, Guelph, Ontario: Originally from Antigonish, NS, Eric represented Canada in the 2008 Beijing Games in the 10,000m. He qualified to represent Canada in this year’s Olympic Marathon by the smallest of margins — one second — running 2:11:28 at the 2011 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon last October. Eric also won the 2012 Canadian Half-Marathon Championship on April 29th at Banque Scotia 21K de Montreal.

Reid Coolsaet, Hamilton, Ontario: Like Gillis, 32-year-old Reid Coolsaet also trains in Guelph under Coach Dave Scott-Thomas at the Speed River Track Club, and he also qualified for London at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront 2011 with a time of 2:10:55. He also spent two months training in Iten, Kenya this past winter.

Kip Kangogo, Lethbridge, AB: Kangogo is the SVHM defending Champion, having won the last three editions in a row. Always a fierce competitor, he currently leads the Canada Running Series overall standings. His goal this season is to win the overall Series. He also hopes to solidify a place on the Canadian Marathon team for the 2013 IAAF World Championships in Moscow through his performance at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon in October. On a personal note, Kip also expects to secure his Canadian citizenship in early 2013.

Lanni Marchant, London, ON:  At 28-years-old, from London, ON, Lanni is one of Canada’s brightest, up-and-coming distance-running stars. She had a tremendous, breakthrough performance at the Rotterdam Marathon this April where she notched a 2:31:51 time, beating her personal best by 13 minutes. Although just outside the Canadian standard for the Women’s Olympic Marathon of 2:29:55. She raced for Canada on May 28th at the Bolder Boulder 10km in Colorado, finishing 11th in a time of 35:02 on a hilly course in high-altitude conditions. 

Krista Duchene:   This 35-year-old mother of three from Brantford, ON, also had a huge breakthrough in Rotterdam on April 15, 2012, finishing in 2:32:05, a seven-minute improvement to her personal best.   

For more Information:

Victoria International Track Classic Preview

June 13, 2012

The second annual National Track League (NTL) continues today with meet number two of six. This one in Victoria, B.C., with the 24th annual Victoria International Track Classic. The Victoria Classic features a number of Canadian headliners including Dylan Armstrong of Kamloops, B.C., Nathan Brannen of Cambridge, Ont., Perdita Felicien of Pickering, Ont., and Justyn Warner of Markham, Ont.

For a preview of all events:

Flotrack will cover the Victoria International live from 7 PM to 9:15 PM Pacific Time (10 PM to 12:15 AM Eastern Time).  WATCH LIVE HERE

The North Face Whistler Half Marathon – Race Preview

May 31, 2012

Saturday’s The North Face Whistler half marathon not only sold out in just 30 days this year – attracting more than 1,000 athletes, but it has also attracted some of the fastest runners in British Columbia.  Elite runners from the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island will make the trip to Whistler to battle it out for the bragging rights of course record holder, and a $1,000 prize purse.  New for 2012 is the Prior Award, a new perpetual trophy honoring the winners of each year’s race.  The Prior Awards are trophies made using a pair of beautiful skis manufactured here in Whistler by Prior Snowboard and Ski which display an impressive top sheet featuring the art work of local painter Chili Thom. 

Elite athletes attending this year include both men’s and ladies champions from the inaugural The North Face Whistler Half Marathon, existing course record holders on other half marathon courses, first place finishers in this years’ Comox and Sunshine Coast half marathons, and top 10 finishers in the BMO Vancouver Marathon.  Many have also won or placed in Oak Bay Half Marathon, Ottawa Half Marathon, and the Royal Victoria Marathon in the past.  Athletes must qualify for elite status, by running a specified time in a previous half marathon, for men that time is under 1 hour and 15 minutes, and for women it’s less than 1 hour and 25 minutes. 

Eleven elite athletes have registered to run on June 2nd including:

  • Jim Finlayson, Victoria BC – Current men’s’  champion – The North Face Whistler Half Marathon
  • Care Wakely, Victoria BC – Current ladies champion – The North Face Whistler Half Marathon
  • Edward McCarthy, Vancouver BC – 7th overall men’s 2012 BMO Vancouver full marathon
  • Tina Connelly, Port Coquitlam – Course record holder Vancouver First Half
  • David Palermo, Vancouver, BC  – 1st overall men’s 2012 April Fools Half Marathon,  current course record holder New Balance Fall Classic
  • Kristina Rody, Burnaby BC
  • Lisa Brooking, Langley BC – 1st overall 2012 April Fools Half Marathon
  • Catrin Jones, Victoria BC – 1st overall 2010 Royal Victoria Full Marathon
  • Amy Schneeberg, Vancouver BC
  • Shawn Nelson, Victoria BC
  • Stephanie Hamilton, Vancouver BC

The race to the finish will be impressive and the fastest runners are expected to reach the finish line in less than 1 hour and 10 minutes after the starting gun sets the pack of 1,000 runners off from Whistler Olympic Plaza. 

More information including a course map and schedule of events can be found at the event website

TC10K features Strong Elite Athlete Field

April 27, 2012

The TC10K will see a strong elite athlete field participating on Sunday April 29. The 2011 champion Willy Kimosop will be competing – he won also in 2009 and came second in 2010 – as will the 2010 champion Kip Kangogo. Philip Samoei, the 2010 GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon winner, will also run. The women’s field will see three of last year’s top five finishers – Natasha Wodak, Lisa Harvey and Lucy Smith.

Kimosop has set a goal time of 29 min this year which is achievable if the weather conditions are favourable. His time in 2009 was 29:29 (his PB is 28:54). Kangogo – who ran in 29:35 in 2010 – is having a very good year, placing first in Harry’s Spring Run-Off 8K, and 2nd in the Vancouver Sun Run. Samoei’s best 10K time is 28:05, faster than the course record of 28:47 set by Simon Chenowua in 1995.

The men’s top 10 also includes Joseph Gray from theU.S.,Newfoundland’s Colin Fewer, andVancouver Islandrunners Mark Cryderman and Kris Swanson. The masters field could see an exciting battle between three-time TC10K winner Bruce Deacon, 2011 Island Series silver medalist Craig Odermatt, and Kevin O’Connor who wants to beat the over-45 Canadian road record of 31:19.

The women’s field is equally competitive with the 2011 GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon course record hold, Natasha Fraser the top seed. She was second in the TC10K last year in 34:20. Calgary’s Lisa Harvey is back, fresh off her win in the St. Patrick’s Day 10K in Calgaryand the Harry’s Spring Run-Off 8K in Vancouver. Victoria’s Lucy Smith – six-time winner of the TC10K – was 1st in the Harriers Pioneer 8K in January. Marilyn Arsenault won the masters women title at this year’s Vancouver Sun Run. Other top 10 contenders include Melissa Ross, triathlete Lisa Mensink, Catrin Jones and Claire Morgan.  

In the wheelchair category three-time Paralympic Gold Medalist Michelle Stilwell will be competing. A dominating force in the T52 wheelchair classification, she holds World Records in the 100m, 200m and 400m events and is a strong Gold medal contender for the London Paralympic Games.

The TC10K is Canada’s second largest 10-kilometre race. At close of online registration on Wednesday April 25, 12,147 had registered. Individuals can still register at Race Package Pick up from noon – 5 pm Friday April 27, and 10 am – 6 pm on Saturday April 28 at the Race Expo at the Delta Ocean Pointe Resport. For more information see:

Close battles expected for men’s and women’s titles at the 35th BMO Sunshine Coast April Fool’s Run

March 27, 2012

The battle for top spots and cash prizes should be an exciting one at this year’s BMO Sunshine Coast April Fool’s Run presented by Coast Cable, set for Sunday April 1st.  In both the men’s and women’s fields the top contenders are quite evenly matched, while a couple of top locals may also have a shot at the podium.

On the men’s side, multi-time top local Shaun Stephens-Whale of Roberts Creek is expected to be in the lead pack with last year’s 2nd and 4th place winners David Palermo of Vancouver and Drew Nicholson of Surrey, along with 2007 & 2009 winner Graeme Wilson of Vancouver. Whether UBC graduate and former varsity team member Stephens-Whale can stay with them is the question. His best half is 1:13:33 while the other three have all run in the 1:10-1:12 range in the past 12 months – but a big PB is very possible for this 22-year-old who has had big breakthroughs in the past, and he has the home-town advantage: the family home is at the 15k mark.

Wilson is the favourite to win the Masters 40+ division, but the chase for the new 2nd and 3rd place prize money will likely unfold between Vancouver Falcons (VFAC) teammates Mark Bennett and Mike Palichuk.

The women’s race is shaping up to be a close match between Langley’s Lisa Brooking, Vancouver’s Kristin Smart and triathlete Gillian Clayton of Vancouver. Though Brooking has the best half-marathon personal best (PB) of the bunch at 1:20:36, Smart ran a breakthrough 2:49 marathon in December and has been zipping off shorter distance PB’s regularly this year, including a 1:22:20 “First Half” Half Marathon. Clayton, whose half-marathon PB is 1:23:06, was the top non-pro woman (5th overall) at last August’s Ironman Canada Triathlon in Penticton, blasting through the field in the marathon portion with an even split 3:14 on an extremely hot day; and she recently finished a stride ahead of Smart in 18:22 at the BMO St. Patrick’s Day 5k in Vancouver. Brooking was just 4s ahead of both women in the same 5k.

Local favourite Kimberley Doerksen won’t be far behind the leaders this year, having recently run a new PB of 1:25:49 at the Disney Princess Half Marathon, a significant improvement over her 1:27:53 at last year’s Fool’s Run.

The Masters Women’s 40+ race will be a familiar scene, with another pair of VFAC teammates going head to head again as they did in 2009 – Rebecca Reid and Helen Ritchie.

Start time is 9:00am Sunday from the Gibsons & Area Community Centre, with an early start for walkers and 3hr+ runners at 8:00am. Online registration is closed but in-person registration is available during package pickup on Thursday 12-6pm at Forerunners North Vancouver, and Saturday 2-6pm and Sunday 7:30-8:30am at the Gibsons Community Centre.

The 35th anniversary edition features a new finish line at Mission Point Park, a free children’s run sponsored by Pastimes, a newly designed finisher medal, hot food at the finish line, enhanced volunteer support from BMO, and a grand draw prize weekend getaway at Painted Boat Resort Spa & Marina. The BMO April Fool’s Run is race #4 in the 2012 Lower Mainland Road Race Series. See for details.

Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon Goes LIVE on CBC

October 12, 2011

Scotiabank, Toronto Tourism and Canada Running Series are delighted to announce a partnership with CBC to provide live broadcast of this year’s Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, taking place Sunday, October 16th.

The CBC broadcast of Canada’s premiere running event live will put a worldwide spotlight on Toronto and athletics in Canada plus goes even further to cement the STWM as a leading sporting event on both a national and international stage.

Broadcast Schedule:

  • Live TV starts at 8:30 am ET, October 16th, on CBC’s digital channel BOLD.
  • Live web streaming will be available on until 2pm.
  • Later the same day at 3.00pm local times, a highlights program will run on CBC [main channel, national network], including special features and stories on the Canadian professional athletes’ pursuit of the Olympic qualifying standard.

CBC’s Scott Russell will host, with international distance racing expert and analyst Tim Hutchings joining the team to present a full day of racing broadcasts.

Vancouver’s Dylan Wykes will be chasing an Olympic qualifying time (2:11:29), having won the California International Marathon in 2:12:39 last December.

But he won’t be the only BC athlete competing. Dylan’s training partner, Steve Osaduik, with a 2:16:49 PB is entered. So too is Dylan Gant, who will be making his marathon debut. And Kevin O’Connor will be looking to win the masters competition.

On the women’s side, Katherine Moore will be looking to repeat as the top Canadian, having run 2:47:44 at STWM last year. And Teresa Nightingale will be challenging for top master honours.

Good luck to all.

T-Bird squads among top 10 in pre-season polls

September 6, 2011

The UBC Thunderbirds cross country teams both earned spots in the top 10 of the 2011 NAIA Cross Country Coaches’ Preseason Polls. The men, who finished 2010 at no. 15, jumped all the way to no. 5 while the women are at no. 6, after finishing last year at no. 9.

Reigning national champion Southern Oregon landed at No. 1 in the 2011 NAIA Men’s Cross Country Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Wednesday. Powered behind 15 of 18 possible first-place votes, the Raiders racked up 496 points to garner their first-ever preseason No. 1-ranking.

Wayland Baptist (Texas) was awarded a pair of first-place nods for 480 points to earn the No. 2-ranking, followed by third-ranked Oklahoma Christian with 453 points. Shorter (Ga.) picked up the final first-place vote to total 447 points and check in at No. 4. It is the first top-five rating for the Hawks, whose highest previous ranking was ninth in the 2009 preseason announcement. For the second-consecutive year, British Columbia begins its campaign ranked fifth with 432 points.

Two-time defending national champion Cal State San Marcos landed at No. 1 in the 2011 NAIA Women’s Cross Country Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Wednesday. The Cougars were awarded 16 of 18 possible first-place votes for 497 points. It is the first time dating back to 1999 that the Cougars will begin their season at No. 1.

UBC opens their season in Seattle, WA, at the Sundodger Invitational, hosted by the University of Washington, on Saturday, September 17.